Americans buy 6.5 billion paper greeting cards every year despite the popularity of the Internet and smart phones. According to the Greeting Card Association, the top occasions for sending cards currently are birthdays, sympathy, thank you, new baby, congratulations, wedding, and get well. It just goes to show that Americans love to connect with their friends and family and acknowledge special moments. In fact, we acknowledge over 541 million special moments each month.  With the holiday season rapidly approaching, I decided to take a look at greeting cards this month. Here are a some facts about greeting cards in the past and the present


Then (The Past)

Greeting cards have origins in ancient Egypt and ancient China where it was common to exchange written new years greetings


Some of the oldest greeting cards were made in the 1400s on pieces of wood


In the early 1800’s many greeting cards were typically handmade


The introduction of the 1 cent postage stamp in the 1840s allows the general public to easily send greeting cards through the post office for the first time


The first mass produced greeting cards are usually credited to Louis Prang, who opened a printing business in Boston, Massachussettes in 1856


By the 1870s, Prang had perfected his own special color lithography technique and in 1875 released his own complete line of Christmas cards to the American public


With the spread of the color lithography, greeting cards gained even more popularity in the 1930s


Humorous cards were introduced, and subsequently gained popularity, in the 1940s and 1950s


Now (the Present)

In 2013 alone, over 1.5 million Christmas cards were sent last year making it the top ranking holiday for people to send cards. (Number 2 is Valentines Day with 144 million cards sent)


A number of online business’ have emerged that will let customers purchase and send a paper greeting card right from the Internet.


Many customers will buy greeting cards to frame as a piece of art


According to a recent survey done by the Greeting Card Association, giving a greeting card creates a lasting impression and emotional bond between sender and receiver. Many card receipients save greeting cards they received forever


The average household buys between 2 to 3 greeting cards every month